tv [untitled] August 29, 2011 5:30pm-6:00pm PDT
with comments, helping us to advise the director, as far as the department running, making sure that the staff is taking care of, that our stakeholders that come in and use our services are heard. i have been in ann's office on any given day. eventually, the calls can make it to the commissioners, but the word that the secretary does to support us doing our job is just essential. i have to say, i have not seen a secretary perform as well as you have anywhere in the city on a constant basis of providing us with what we need to get our job done. so i want to personally thank you for helping me as a
commissioner, as a new commissioner and now as an older commissioner. you have really made it possible to make sure that the commission serves and provides the service that we know we can. without you, specifically, without our secretary and support staff, we would not be able to do our job. you have been instrumental in performing this department and setting us on the course we are on now, as frustrating and slow as it is sometimes, it is because of you that we have been able to do what we have. so thank you for your support and working for us to provide this wonderful support for the city. thank you. commissioner murphy: it was great working with you. i have known you for over 20 years. always great to come into your office, especially with that great big basket of candy on
your desk. you were just a great person to be around. you never took sides. you were always there -- fair. i just think tonya -- sonya will have a tough time filling your shoes. commissioner lee: thank you for your service and congratulations on your retirement. i do not think any of us were expecting you. to tell you the truth, i was going to ask the commission later on if we could properly thank you and commend you had a future commission meeting and invite you back. i hope that we can still do that. maybe we will see you at that time, too. commissioner mar: for me, i am the new kid on the block up
here. i do not think i could have gone orientated to the department without your help. thank you for that. you are right. it is the people on the front line of the department that gets a lot of the work done. i am learning that. sometimes, i do not they are appreciated as much as they could be. commissioner hechanova: no words can explain enough our gratitude for your service and also to the commissioners, to the city. you will be missed, but you will be around. we look forward to helping you celebrate your new chapter, but at the same time, you will always be welcome back. thank you very much, ann. [applause] >> is there any further public comment?
>> good morning commissioners. -- good morning, commissioners. i did not expect ann to be here either. it just shows her commitment and how much she loves dbi. she was a great person to contact, even to chat. we are going to miss you, ann. looking forward to seeing you again. thank you. >>item 5. update on housing code enforcement. 5a, status of mou with housing authority. commissioner walker: this was an
agenda item i ask to be put on as part of the update with our -- partnership with the housing authority. thank you for being here. maybe staff could come first? >> good morning. chief housing inspector. i was not quite sure of all the data to provide you with today, so we basically went through our database and summarized for you, in a form that we have presented to the commission back in 2008, the number of complaints that lead directly received on housing authority cases on the basis of an mou executed between the housing authority and department of building inspection, what that breakout
happens to be. with respect to that, from 2007 until year to date, 150 cases that you see on the summary, there are currently four cases still open. two are associated with heat, in which the individuals have temporary heating devices while an overall system is replaced in the public housing projects in which they reside. the other remaining two cases have to do with access issues. we believe those items have been corrected. so of the 150 cases, keep in mind, when a complaint comes to dbi under the procedures of the mou, sometimes the individual is complaining about more than one item. in the far left, and you will see that that totals of the particular items that came in under that particular complaint.
while it is 150 particular cases, it was about 244 actual items that we had to address. in looking back at this mou now since it was executed in 2007, commissioner walker, you remember it took us almost two years to get the mou executed because both parties had to agree on the language. john was monumental in helping us with the language at the time. from the protocol established in the mou that we respond to complete within so many days, we do an inspection if it is a life safety hazard -- all those types of things seem to be working. as far as complaints made directly to the housing authority through a their systemor 311, i cannot speak to that because that is outside of the department of building inspection.
so unless there are any particular questions, i am able to answer those, but it seemed as though the commission also wanted to hear from the housing authority on those other issues. commissioner walker: thank you. >> good morning. management analyst for the san francisco housing authority. we have no formal report at this time on the status of the mou. there were some heeding complaints at a prior commission meeting that took place a few months ago. to my knowledge, those have been resolved. i will be happy to entertain any questions you have and report back any comments to the housing authority. commissioner walker: this is really helpful because we have complaints that make it back to our department. there are also several organizations that we contract
with to provide tenant out of reach. we have been hearing from them that there had been a delay in working with the housing authority to resolve some of the have the ability issues. -- tenant outreach. apparently, there was an effort to get information on the housing authority's mold, mildew, have the ability, complaints that have come through this organization, and there seemed to be a reluctance to share that information. my goal as having this as an agenda item is making sure that we are working towards the same goal, which is to provide safe, clean, and help the housing to folks out in the city of san francisco. i wanted to just get an update on how the mou was working and
make sure there was a commitment to partnering on these kinds of activities. that is really my goal here. commissioner hechanova: additional questions? do you have a comment? >> our designated representative who was supposed to be here this morning unexpectedly fell ill. i cannot present the status of the mou, but we can do so at the next meeting. commissioner walker: ok. the purpose here is to make sure we have a solid partnership and are working together. it is due to hear, -- good to hear, once we get a hold of a complaint we are working in a way that works with a housing authority. i just want to make sure our contractors are given the same courtesy in working with the housing authority on habitability issues.
commissioner mar: it seems like when the complaints are issued, problems are getting resolved in a fairly timely manner. the other thing i was wondering, if there was a breakdown in more problems and complaints from specific projects? there are a lot of different housing projects. maybe some of them are older, others that are more problematic. do you have a break down about that? >> with respect to the fact that the housing authority has 6000 or more units and the number of complaints that we get, they are not representative as far as sampling. we do have some customer that will call us because it is their habit to do so. if he does not go on at a particular time in a certain project. we then assist them with the housing authority. generally, what we see, not
necessarily a cluster like that, but more a situation where the housing authority is willing to do -- if it is a large capital improvement project -- to do something to help that tenant. whether it is giving them interim heat or relocating them. that is one option that they can look into, moving into a unit that is more agreeable to them. so we see a plethora of the things that they are doing with respect to the complaints, but not the kind of saturation that we would come if we were out there doing another similar type of inspection. commissioner walker: so we have the have theoutreach folks in our sro collaborative dealing with these issues so that they do not get to us, hopefully. >> and there is a history of
working within the housing authority, that we have some expertise in the program. commissioner walker: are we meeting with the housing authority on a regular basis to resolve these issues? i think it would be very beneficial to do that through our through ouroutreach. -- code enforcement outreach. >> with respect to the housing authority, currently, it is complaint-driven. one of the good things about the mou -- which did not have been previously -- as soon as we get a complaint that comes to us and it goes to the housing authority, their in-house counsel knows about that complaint. that seems to go a long way in helping to resolve these issues more quickly. currently, it is complete- driven.
-- complaint-driven. commissioner walker: if i may, in might be good to be proactive and have a collaborative meeting with the authority. >> we are happy to do that, but -- the last time i made a presentation on that issue before the commission was in march 2008. if we move towards anything else with our current resources, then that is policy issues that the commission would need to be involved in, as well as executive management. to refresh your recollection, when the condition at that time would be to meet with house authority to meet with those properties, two, to give input from our out rich people, and then to 3, survey the properties. and we have the new issue of 3112 like it did take a look of
the basin of the commission asked, whether there are a cluster of complaints coming in to a particular product that we are not seeing appeared before launching into anything else other than a complete-driven system, these would definitely be the thing that we want to have your joint input into. commissioner murphy: 6000 units? >> approximately, [inaudible] commissioner murphy: don't they have in-house plumbers and electricians? >> it is my understanding that they do. i believe the deputy director can give you information about that. commissioner murphy: out of 6000 units, it seems like the complaints are very small. >> if you look at the percentages with the amount of units, there are not that many complaints coming into us. commissioner murphy: so i do not
understand why we are diving into this? we have a small staff. do we have enough manpower to take on all this stuff? >> no, and that is why i was saying, all we're doing now is complaint-driven. we would be looking at an unfunded mandate essentially. not that we should not do it, but it is unfounded. commissioner murphy: -- unfunded. commissioner murphy: the buck stops with us, but we should not be out here in force and all of these things. >> that is correct. back in 2008, when we had this conversation, i had seven clerical staff and one supervisor. i have gone down to one clerical
staff and one supervisor. if we were to take on more, we would need more resources and staff to even begin to look at anything different than what we are doing now. commissioner murphy: i just do not want this to get into bed bug issue. that is what everyone was talking about up to the election. i have not heard about it recently. >> unfortunately, they are still out there -- commissioner walker: the point i'm trying to make is the stuff that comes into us is not all we are dealing with. i want to make sure that we are engaged, as we have committed to, no more, no less, and that we are aware of the issues. i have heard complaints through other programs as well. i just want to make sure that the partnership is in tact and that we are available to help with these types of issues that
come up. >> absolutely, and at that point, it would be the decision of the executive management and commission to do something else. we would be able to immediately do that because we have got such good working relationships with the housing authority and those other groups that are well versed with the problems going on. commissioner walker: absolutely. without committing more of our staff time and anything else, we already have our code enforcement outreach there. it could just be a matter of bringing housing authority in to those meetings. >> the housing rights committee has historically done a phenomenal work in these projects. this goes back to when we had those lawsuits. going back to significant resources being put into adjacent areas. in the oakdale project, we spent
60 hours on the notice of violation, participating on the project. the housing rights committee was an essential part of that. commissioner hechanova: was there resolution of all of those components? >> yes, but it took a long time to go item by item. part of the problem was, at the time the housing authority had plans to partially vacate that part of the project. there was one part that was still occupied but not well maintained. it took quite a bit of time to be able to get those items addressed. commissioner hechanova: but they have been resolved? >> yes, but things may recur, but yes.
>> >> good morning, commissioners. just a little background. their federally funded. we will probably start to get more complaints about their man's. >thank you. >> are we in a position to handle all these extra complaints? >> we are rather tax with what we have, but we do have three work orders and for three more house inspectors. if we get the other three house inspectors, that would help out quite a bit. >> ok, thank you. additional questions? >> any public comment? we're going to do the public comment at the end of both. item number 5b.
>> mr. president and members of the commission, when that song yet indicated to me that this was on the agenda last week, i have to look at the data to see what i could pull that would be meaningful to you. i can get a list of the number of complaints within a certain amount of time, but it does not give me because a lot of this is in the narrative in the way it is captured. what we did is print out the 295 cases that were heat or hot water complaints that received from the last calendar year to give you some kind of meaningful snapshot of what is going on. to be able to come up with this data took about eight hours. so a lot of this data is not
captured. we found interesting things that we wanted to share with you over all. as you can see, the majority of heat and hot water complaints that come in were over in longingly he complains. of these cases we are required to make some type of a response within one business day. as you can see, even with the staff shortage we were able to do that with 94% of the time. the remaining have some sort of response within 2 business days. not all, but most. in those instances which is typically the situation the inspector will go in and update complete tracking when they have been able to go in and do inspection. keep in mind that an inspection cannot occur with one or two business days, because we're also working with an individual.
it is complained about a heating unit within an individual's dwelling or guest room, we have to scuttle a time for them to be able to do the inspection. from the calendar year until now we have about 27 cases that have carried over that are open for various reasons. some because they are duplicates, some because we're waiting for the permits to be final. there are various reasons why that may be the case. that means we have the majority of the cases that have some resolution. the other thing that takes awhile is that if you go in to complete tracking and is this the case is debated, that means everything is done. payment of assessment of cost and everything is done. that is a day week in a train -- obtained very easily. i have to look case by case to determine. we literally went to all 295
cases to come up with that. if we had more time, i would have been happy to get this information to you sooner. let me tell you, that is that the only one of the list of items in a long wish list that we of given to executive management that we would like to see in the new system when someone is hired for that. we wanted to make sure we got you some meaningful data. >> our tracking mechanism right now is basically having to go back and read, as opposed to keeping track of which specific items are listed? >> >> i did i hear the first part. >> the tracking thmechanism sees very cumbersome right now. >> it is. it depends on the type of data being captured. in a situation like this where you would want to know how many
of the complaints or problems with the boy rather than something else, it does not track that. i would have to go into each of these cases and look at a notation that tells me that. we are asking for that type of data to be tracked in the new system, but it is not like that right now. i have to look of the notice of violation, and then be able to tell you that. having looked at 295 cases for the last calendar year, i will tell you a very small percentage of he completat complaints had o wideal with the boiler. the majority of complaints had to deal with this time clock not being sent properly or the thermostat being defective. if it was a single-source heating device from a gas or electrical compliance in a dwelling unit, it was usually
something having to do with the heat-sensing device or maintenance. that was after going through each one of the cases individually, which we have been doing since last week. >> are they trained -- let's say someone calls and what of faulty boiler -- calls in with a faulty boiler or hear, does your staff responded and asked them if they have contacted the landlord or property management first before we take it on? before we this that someone in other words. >> absolutely, because we want the property owner to get on that as soon as possible. generally the occupants is telling us there is no heat.
they do not necessarily know what kind of system it is or what ever. we have to find out what is in the central system, can we get into see the boiler or the time claclock? the time clock is usually behind closed doors. that is the first thing we look at. >> what i would really like to hear is to get a list of the repeat offenders, property owners that are doing this all the time. the majority of property owners out there take care of their business, i would like to see that list of these repeat, what i would call owners that do not do the repairs in time. if you could come up with that. to go on th>> on the heat situa? >> yes.
>> we could do that. there were a number of situations that by the time we got out there they were already abated. we ask them to call to let them know so they could look at this situation. that happened very frequently because we were asking that question. >> when there is heat the issue or hot water issue, do we, as they are trying to resolve the bigger issues, is there some way that we require them to provide heat, space heaters, that type of thing until they get the bigger issue fixed? >> it depends on how long the work is going to take and whether they can do that in a safe manner. the housing code says when you put space heaters in, they cannot substitute for qualified for the required hearing -- heating and was there permanently fixed with a permit.
that is are rare instance when the housing code is very strict. it depends upon the time frame and how long it will take. we are issuing paper, issuing notices and sending them to directors hearing. we're building the people and referring them to the city commission. generally if there is lack of heat, there's usually other maintenance issues. then we are before you asking those cases be referred to the city attorney. it is generally the elevator and other issues going on with the building as well. we will analyze that to see what has been outstanding for how long and what the nature of it is. you have heard as make those recommendations. we're happy to go back and look at that. if you look like us to do this particular sampling and see if we do the same building and if it was the same problem. it is not the time clock, i would give